|On the right side, where the yellow sticky tags are from last year, is a row of peas.
|Looking up the hill under the power lines.
|Pretty uninteresting, just brush and grass that prevents the wildflowers from getting established.
|From top of hill looking downward. You can only see about half the meadow from here.
The good thing about Ornamec is you can spray the grass, and it only kills grass. It won't hurt the wildflower seeds that are coming up and you can spray right over the seedlings without any harm to them. Since I don't grow food crops in this area and the wildflowers are important to the bees, I decided that getting rid of the grass this year would go a long way in helping establish a wildflower area that should only need an annual mowing after this. (Wildseed Farms sells this product and recommends it for getting wildflowers established).
You can see, above, the tiny wildflower seeds are coming up. I've planted an assortment of liatris, poppymallow, oxeye daisies, coneflowers, Mexican hats, yarrow, poppies, larkspur, bachelor's buttons, butterfly weed, clover and lots more. Some are annuals that will reseed themselves, others, like the coneflowers, are perennials and will continue to grow and expand their area. Just 2 years ago this area was trees and brush, like you see on each side of the photos. After the power company brought their giant brush-cutting equipment and ground everything down, fescue, that mostly useless grass took over. Turning the area into a wildflower meadow seems like a better use of the area. I've tried planting wildflowers before, sowing directly into grasses without much result. This method of controlling grass the first year, as well as scratching up bare soil with a rake or tiller, or both, before planting the seed, will give better results.
In my fantasies, this is what I hope it will look like. It may not look that way, but hopefully it will be close. Once established, a yearly mowing or light cleanup should help keep it a nice wildflower meadow.
Back in the garden, I dug a bucket of parsnips. Adam planted them last August and we've had nice parsnips all winter. It's amazing how many people have told me they've never eaten a parsnip, and wouldn't know what to do with them. What a great vegetable, one of my favorites! Roasted, boiled, added to chicken pot pie, steamed and buttered, just about any way you cook them. I actually like parsnips better than carrots, cooked.
|This is about half a 5 gallon bucket from just one row of parsnips. I have 7 more rows to dig!